A fabulous little genus

Daubenya stylosa (W .H .Baker) A. M. van der Merwe & J. C. Manning

One of the most attractive species in what is anyway, a fabulous little genus composed of superstars. This has glowing bright yellow flowers. The petals have a slight tinge of orange whilst the long style and the filaments which hold the anthers are bright yellow. The overall effect is stunning.

The flowers have a strong scent of honey. They ooze nectar and are bee- and butterfly-pollinated. This different scent and a distinct floral structure attracts different pollinators and helps keep this species distinct. Unlike most species, the seed of stylosa is comparatively large and heavy and spreads only locally (it is not wind dispersed as in many Daubenya).

This is autumnal, flowering from October to November and is known only from a few populations in the immediate vicinity of Nieuwoudtville where it grows in red doleritic clay. The species was discovered in 1934 and named just two years later.

As with most Daubenya, these need a sharply-drained compost and are best kept dry from July to October and just frost-free, but cool, light and airy, in winter.

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